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Dikembe's Signature: The Adidas Mutombo

"Man does not fly in the house of Mutombo."

Andreas Rentz/Getty Images

Atlanta officially retired Dikembe Mutombo's jersey (number 55) on Tuesday, November 24.  During his career, Dikembe Mutombo was an Adidas signature athlete.  He signed with Adidas in 1992; during his rookie season.  His original sneaker deal was worth over $1 million, and at the time, was comparable to Michael Jordan's deal with Nike. A Mutombo inspired athletic clothing line was also featured in this contract.

Below is an Adidas commercial.  It features Mutombo's shoe and clothing line, while taking a jab at Nike's Air Jordan line.

The distinct geometric design featured in Mutombo's shoes and clothing line was inspired by Dikembe's Congo heritage.  Mutombo's logo is fluid with this geometric inspiration and incorporates his jersey number, 55.  This shoe was similar to most 90's sneakers; thick and bulky, but what it lacked in functionality it made up for in style.  In 1995 Adidas released a second Mutombo shoe.  While this shoe was more performance based, it lost consumers because it was less eye appealing. An Adidas Mutombo III was never released.

The Adidas Mutombo was made retro in 2013 with multiple colorways being released to the public.  Currently, the shoe is sold out at Adidas, but can still be purchased through the dark side of the sneaker industry (ebay).  I wouldn't be surprised to see additional retro releases in the future.